Brian Baird and Danny Westneat want you to know how great the surge has been and those of us in WA-03 better say uncle!
But now that it appears he was right — that the Iraq war was going better, as he claimed, and President Bush’s troop surge was working — the Southwest Washington congressman is even more of an outcast.
Now nobody much wants to talk to him about Iraq at all.
“After all that extraordinary outrage directed at me, not one person has called me up and said ‘Hey, Brian, it looks like you might have had a point after all,’ ” said Baird, in Denver for his party’s national convention this week.
“We say Bush is so blinded by ideology that he ignores the facts in the real world, and that’s true,” Baird said. “Aren’t we doing the same thing? We’re being just like Bush.”
At least 45 people were killed and 59 injured on Tuesday in attacks, including a bloody suicide and car bomb attack in Iraq’s restive Diyala province, in some of the worst violence the country has witnessed in recent months.
A simultaneous suicide and bomb attack in Diyala province killed at least 35 people. Around 47 people were injured in the attack.
A suicide bomber got out of a car and detonated himself amid a crowd of police recruits standing in front of a police station in Jalawla town, some 60 km northeast of the Iraqi capital, witnesses told a news agency.
Seconds after the man detonated his vest, the car loaded with explosives blew up, the witnesses said.
Yep, only brown furriners being killed, so it’s all good.
Let me put this as succinctly as I can. I was willing and still am willing to entertain Baird’s opinions about what to do in Iraq, and I refused to participate in the public flogging of Baird a year ago. Of course there are reasons not to leave too hastily. But there were also valid reasons to start figuring out how to withdraw troops, and guess what, now we are doing that planning, just ahead of the 2008 election. Go figure.
But the reason Baird’s being shunned isn’t because he had a different opinion on Iraq (or the Schiavo madness, the bankruptcy bill, forestry practices or the FISA sellout) but because he keeps adopting Republican frames, ala Joe Lieberman.
Like, you know, claiming that the surge is a success and painting himself as a victim of the dirty fucking hippies, and then lecturing us about reality. Give me a break.
Sadly, Baird’s Republican opponent in the general election, Michael Delavar, who is sometimes painted as an anti-war candidate, is only anti-war in a completely insane Ron Paul sense. Delavar wants to issue letters of marquee and reprisal to fight the dirty furrin brown people, which worked great against the Barbary pirates, but the last pirate I ever saw was in Orlando, standing next to a giant mouse. Some plan.
I was probably going to vote for Baird in the general election, if for no other reason than people like Delavar who want to run an information age economy based on 18th Century economic practices are kind of scary. I like gold as much as the next guy, but there’s not enough gold in the solar system to back the dollar against our debts to China.
I’ll probably still wind up voting for Baird, but I will certainly be on the lookout for any upcoming go-getters who can run against him next cycle. It kind of pains me personally as I was a volunteer on Baird’s 1996 oh-so-close run against Rep. Linda Smith, when he lost in the end by 887 votes or so.
I know, I’ll be accused of having a “litmus test” when in fact the only test to be in the “big tent” Democratic Party is that you don’t help the other guy put up his tent. Which is exactly what Baird is doing.
At that point you’re on the other team. Not an enemy, but an opponent.